Q&A with CCC - Infotrieve, Visibility, and the 2015 Roadmap

Q&A with CCC - Infotrieve, Visibility,
and the 2015 Roadmap
January 2015
Q&A with CCC - Infotrieve, Visibility,
and the 2015 Roadmap
FreePint has long had a good partnership with Copyright Clearance Center and its
international subsidiary, RightsDirect. We’ve also worked closely with Infotrieve, and
most recently wrote about its development of library outsourcing services.
Therefore, with the autumn 2014 announcement of CCC’s acquisition of Infotrieve, we
knew we wanted to go deeper than the press release to learn more about the strategy
and vision for integration of the two businesses. And we knew that the scope of their
shared expertise around document delivery, rights, usage and workflow would be a
useful addition to the “Making Information Visible” Series. We connected with CCC general manager and executive director Emily Sheahan to get
insight on the acquisition, the organisation’s perspective on the subject of information
visibility, and her preview of the newly enlarged entity’s roadmap for 2015.
FreePint: Let’s start with a brief history of your acquisition of Infotrieve by Copyright
Clearance Center. What prompted this move, and why is now the right time?
Emily Sheahan: Our two organisations have been working side by side in the
marketplace for decades. We’ve had conversations over the years about partnering; it’s
always made sense.
In 2014, Infotrieve was looking to sell, and it was the right time and the right
opportunity for us.
FreePint: Is the deal completed?
Emily Sheahan: Yes, the acquisition was completed the beginning of November 2014
and we’re in our integration period right now. We’re coming up on 100 days midFebruary.
FreePint: What’s the timeline for integration? When would we be saying, “Okay, now
we’re in the ‘new normal’?”
Emily Sheahan: We want it to come after the 100 days. That deadline doesn’t mean
we’re done by any means, but it means that on Day 101, we come to work and know
that we have a defined plan and are now implementing on the plan.
We’re doing a full, functional integration, so all of Infotrieve’s functional operations will
be absorbed within CCC. For instance, the Infotrieve sales group now reports into our
VP of sales here at CCC. The operations group reports into our operations, and so on.
FreePint: You’ve got your North American presence under CCC and then your
European/international presence with RightsDirect; how does the integration of
Infotrieve fit in with these business units?
By Robin Neidorf
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Emily Sheahan: Infotrieve has a presence in Europe: we have employees in Germany
and in the UK as well. Many of those employees now report into our RightsDirect office
based in Amsterdam.
© Free Pint Limited 2015
Q&A with CCC - Infotrieve, Visibility, and the 2015 Roadmap
January 2015
FreePint: Right now FreePint is running a Topic Series called “Making Information
Visible”. This series examines the variables involved in making information more visible
and thus, valuable to users.
It seems like this is an area in which both CCC and Infotrieve have had a stake: making
sure that users have access as well as the ability to use the right information in the
right way.
Within the broad topic of visibility, how do you see this joined-up new company being
able to address this need?
Emily Sheahan: Really the reason we bought them is everything you just described. I
definitely see it as a benefit. It just really made good sense, plain and simple.
If you go back a few years ago, our customers started asking for more services. At
CCC, we give people the right to share content, but where do they get the content? A
couple of years ago, customers started saying to us, “Listen, you give me the rights and
that’s great, but you don’t give me the content. I just want to go to one place.”
You don’t want to go to three different websites to get three different things, and then
have to pull it all together yourself.
We bought a company a couple years ago called Pubget which allowed us to put rights
at the point of content, and content at the point of rights. When users are looking for
content, they can also get the rights to share with colleagues in the same workflow,
or however they want to use it. That was our first foray beyond securing rights into
delivering content.
Now our acquisition of Infotrieve just makes us stronger in that area. Pulling it all
together, we’re doing just what our customers wanted us to do: giving them the
discovery, the content delivery, and the rights all in one place.
FreePint: Excellent. So how do users experience this? What’s the environment?
Emily Sheahan: We developed a software platform, which does what I’ve described.
This is a key piece of the integration following the acquisition. We are creating and
then will execute on a road map to pull all our capabilities into a single, improved
FreePint: What are some of the things users will be able to do on that improved
Emily Sheahan: Again, what we’re aiming for is an uninterrupted workflow. Customers
are asking us for creative efficiencies to make their lives easier and their research faster.
If you’re a researcher your days just really got more efficient, because you’re in one
We are working on providing the capability for you to start your research where you
want – in Google Scholar or in any database – and then pull all the documents into our
platform. You as the user choose your preferred discovery platform, but you still get all
the rights management and document delivery our platform provides.
FreePint: We’re looking forward to digging in to the review of that platform, as soon as
the time is right.
© Free Pint Limited 2015
Q&A with CCC - Infotrieve, Visibility, and the 2015 Roadmap
January 2015
Let’s talk a bit more about usage and rights, because this is an area about which
we hear a lot of questions, and it also relates to visibility. We hear frustration from
customers wanting to share useful materials but not being able to get comprehensive
licensing, or not being able to understand clearly what the cross-jurisdictional
requirements might be. How do you help with this challenge?
Emily Sheahan: I think that people want to do the right thing, but it needs to be as
easy as possible.
For example, if your town gives you a recycling bin, and they come and pick it up every
Wednesday, you’re going to recycle. But if you have to sort it yourself and then go
somewhere on Saturday morning at 7:30 and dump it yourself, you’re not as likely to
Most people want to do the right thing, so if you’re in your environment with the
content and you see a button that says “Click here to get the rights to share this”,
people are more likely to obtain the rights.
What we’re trying to do is make copyright work for everyone. That’s our goal. By
putting the content and the rights together in one workflow, I think we’re closer to
achieving that.
FreePint: One of the areas that’s starting to come up more frequently is that users
want to do things with content that the rightsholders never anticipated, so it’s not
covered by the licensing, or there isn’t an option.
I’m thinking about things like data mining, text mining, combining content streams
from other publishers for example, or with internal content streams. I see that as being
one of the next hurdles that we as an industry need to figure out, need to overcome.
How does that need play out in your strategic planning?
Emily Sheahan: Yes, and you’re totally right; in this day and age things move fast, and
different media come into play, and different ways to get content come into play.
With text- and data-mining specifically, we’ve been working on a product which we’ll
be releasing in 2015. [Editor’s note: FreePint will be covering this product in more detail
as soon as it’s available.]
In addition to text- and data-mining, there are a number of other types of rights that
our users are asking for. We take those requests to our publishers, and we talk to them
about it.
That’s another important thing to keep in mind: along with our users, we also have
strong relationships with our publishers, and we’re constantly working with them on
trends in rights and how to make more possible.
Like I said before, our goal is to make copyright work for everyone. We listen to the user
and listen to the publisher and then find ways to make it all work.
FreePint: Thinking forward through 2015, we’ve just started a new year. Between now
and the end of the year, what would you say would be the headline objectives from a
customer standpoint? Say they’ve been a CCC customer, or an Infotrieve customer, or
both. In what areas are they going to see progress in product and strategy?
© Free Pint Limited 2015
Q&A with CCC - Infotrieve, Visibility, and the 2015 Roadmap
January 2015
Emily Sheahan: We’re looking at a lot of things. Of course, the software platform
enhancements I mentioned before, integrating Mobile Library (which was Infotrieve’s
We’re also looking to continue to expand sales globally. The funny thing is that it’s a
lot of “business as usual” but more and better. That’s how much sense this acquisition
makes: It’s not creating drastic changes for CCC; it just fits in.
Integration work is tough, but we’re getting through it, but our overall strategy for CCC
did not change drastically when we bought Infotrieve. That’s a good thing, because
that validates that we made the right choice.
FreePint: Emily, thank you for sharing this update. I can see we’ll have a lot to come
back to CCC to discuss during the coming year.
About Emily Sheahan
Emily Sheahan is general manager and executive director. Emily is
responsible for CCC’s Global Alliances, Marketing, and Pubget. Emily
joined CCC from HCPro where she was group publisher. In her role
as group publisher, Emily drove strategy, research, development,
production and profitability of products and services in healthcare and
regulation markets. She was also responsible for partnerships and M&A
as well as licensing and syndication of content to software providers,
associations and other business partners. Emily came to HCPro from NBC News -KULR where she was capital bureau chief. A
member of the Specialized Information Publisher’s Association, she served as the
2011 Conference Track co-chair and speaker. Emily earned her Master of Science from
Emerson College and she holds a Bachelor of Science in Corporate Communication
from Ithaca College.
This article was published by
FreePint (www.freepint.com)
in January 2015. Distributed with
permission of FreePint.
All other rights reserved.
For more information about
Copyright Clearance Center,
visit www.copyright.com
© Free Pint Limited 2015